The Great Amherst Mystery

The Great Amherst Mystery

In this article we will be taking a closer look at the Great Amherst mystery – a notorious case of reported poltergeist activity that came out of Nova Scotia in 1878…

Esther Cox

Esther lived in a house that she shared with her sister (Olive), Olive’s husband (Daniel Teed), their two kids, Daniel’s brother…and a further two siblings.

Keeping up? That’s quite a living situation if you ask me!

Anyway, the house was a pretty big property but it often got overcrowded due to the large family AND the temporary renting of rooms.

Esther Cox & Family

Unfortunately, Olive and Daniel failed to keep tabs on the people renting the rooms – and one of them turned out to be a bit of a psycho. He was caught trying to rape Esther one night!

Esther suffered a few minor flesh wounds from the attack but it left her with a severe psychological condition.

Shortly after her attack, she began developing severe fevers which at times were accompanied by strong seizures. This was strange as Esther had gone through her life as an extremely fit and healthy young girl – where was this bad health coming from?

Strange Happenings

One night, Esther and one of her sisters, Jennie, were sharing a bed when they felt strange movements underneath the blanket. They screamed as hard as they could resulting in Olive and Daniel Teed racing up the stairs and bursting into the room.

They found the two sisters huddled together, shaking in the corner of the room.

The following night more screams came from Esther and Jennie’s room. Once again Teed burst into the room, but this time he found an old box smashed up on the floor.

The sisters claimed that they had heard strange noises coming from the box, which had been slid underneath their bed.

Esther drew on all her courage and reached under the bed to drag out the box – without warning, it suddenly jumped by itself and smashed in the middle of the room.

The Third Night

The third night Esther decided to go to bed early – she had been suffering from a strange sickness all morning and felt she needed an early night to recover.

EstherHer sister, Jennie, decided to turn in a couple of hours later. As she slowly slipped into bed she was terrified to see Esther jump out of bed and run into the middle of the room.

Esther was convulsing and screaming “Why is this happening to me? I’m dying!”

She eventually collapsed to the floor as Olive and Daniel Teed entered the room, once again.

They immediately went to help the young girl back up off the floor, but as they did, four thunderous claps resonated throughout the old house.

They finally managed to get Esther into bed, once the demonic claps had stopped, and she remained there ill for the next three days.

Dr. Carritte

The strange events seemed to stop when Esther was ill in bed – her recuperation seemed to put a lid on everything. Unfortunately, as soon as she was well enough to get up…the loud clapping noise was heard throughout the house again!

Olive and Daniel were at their wit’s end – what was this frightening clapping sound and why was Esther getting so ill all the time?

They decided to contact Dr. Carritte, the local family doctor, and invite him around the house for a chat.

Unfortunately, Dr. Carritte’s arrival only resulted in the strange happenings escalating. He decided to stay at the house and document the proceedings…


Over the next few days the doctor witnessed, and recorded, all manner of paranormal activity – he was at a loss for an explanation.

His records show that he also heard loud sounds and banging emanating from underneath Esther’s bed. As he checked underneath her bed he heard an awful scratching sound coming from the room.

He looked up to the bedroom wall, above the bed, and witnessed some sort of invisible entity scratching the words “E S T H E R C O X Y O U A R E M I N E”.

Dr. Carritte was not scared off by this paranormal activity.

Dr. Carritte was not scared off by this paranormal activity.

He went on to record events which involved spontaneous fires erupting throughout the house, food and cutlery being thrown through the air by invisible hands, lit matches materializing above beds and furniture being moved.

Some witnesses even claimed that they heard slapping sounds near the sleeping Esther – resulting in welts rising from her face, as if she had just been hit!

Peace At Last!

Esther eventually asked one of her elder sisters if she could move in with her – she desperately needed to get away from the house and the paranormal activity.

Strangely enough – as soon as she moved into the new house the activity stopped.

After a few months of peace Esther returned to the house in Amherst…but this was a bad move…

The paranormal activity started up again!

Esther moved out of the house – since she believed that it was the source of her troubles – and moved into the home of a friend of the family.

After a few weeks of peace, the barn outside her friend’s house mysteriously caught fire and burned to the ground. Her friend was convinced that Esther was behind the blaze and she was arrested for arson.

She served a month in prison before being released.

This prison stint seemed to signal the end of the poltergeist activity – it never bothered her again.

If you have any thoughts or opinions on the subject we have covered here today, please leave them in the comment section below.

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